“ I am not yet so bald that you can see my brains. ” —Longfellow. (From Ashburton Herald, June 19.) Mr. Bullock does a blow now and again when his key note is “ Ashburton.” He never loses a chance to sing the township’s praises, and those paeans of his are heard at a great distance sometimes. They have his last one at Taranaki, through the telephone apparently of the Ashburton press, for your namesake the Taranaki Herald fancies he discovers just the least bit of inaccuracy in Mr. Bullock’s melody. Mr. Bullock piped up thusly at the last gas meeting—that Ashburton was the only township in the colony that had been lit with gas within five years of the township’s birth. The Taranaki man reads without his spectacles, and he is wrongheaded enough to fancy our Thomas loves the Gas-Company better than the township which it lights, and that Thomas was “gassing” about the Company and not about Ashburton. So, . shooting in the dark, the Taranaki man misses the mark. Me tells us that Thomas does not know Taranaki history enough, and that before he cracks up a company
like ours he should learn what has been clone in Taranaki, where the Company was making gas and lighting the township within two years of the Company's formamation. Thomas’s company is ahead of that even, great as Mr. Taranaki Herald may think the achievement—but my friend Shott was fleeing from the Taranaki township away back in the “ sixties,” long before Ashburton had been gridironed. A diabolical Ashburtonian of my acquaintance—not an intimate acquaintance, he’s too unlovely—says there are two cures he knows of. One is for Irish discontent and the other is for the Maori difficulty, and he fondly cherishes both as the regenerating agencies that ought to be brought into play for the benefit of Great Britain in the first instance and of New Zealand in the second. To cure Irish discontent he would tow the prettiest island under the sun into the broad Atlantic and scuttle it. That’s not a new idea, but its carrying out will be a good deal newer when we hear of it. Evidently he doesn’t know the “Celtic Race” so well as the poetically gifted Bard O’Reilly, nor as your humble servant, who has a lump as large as a hen’s egg on the back of his head —a souvenir of a faction fight. The second idea is not novel either, but it would be more effective. He would lay bags of sugar and flour, each sack well dosed with arsenic, within tempting view of the Maoris, and let them imagine they were stealing them. By and by, with a continuance of this baiting, the untutored savage would soon migrate to the happy hunting grounds, where Admitted to that equal sky His faithful dog would bear hirn company. I don’t know that my acquaintance has been distributing his regenerative ideas amongst the people of Ashburton ; .and that some genius or other, finding it impossible to tackle such a huge job as towing out Ireland to the middle of the Atlantic and scuttling the Green Isle, tries a modified form of the other suggestion, and goes for the Ashburton dogs by the more homely and more easily got at medium of bread and butter. I can’t get at the reason any man can have for taking the dangerous course some fool or other has gone in for in spreading poisoned baits about the streets, seeing that only good dogs have suffered. He seems to forget that well-fed mongrels—and mongrels are mostly all well-fed—are quite above bread and butter, and won’t go it nohow, and the result is that sensible, well-trained dogs, who have to work for their living, have to pay the penalty of a hurried giving way to appetite. I have been asked by many broad-shouldered fellows to say that immediately on the culprit being found out he will be treated to a ducking in the Ashburton river, at the end of rope made from the best New Zealand flax, and your humble servant is to have the honor of heading the procession that will escort him to his bath. There is nothing like a cold bath for bringing a disordered brain back to reason, just as the whip is invaluable for the cure of cowardly wickedness. At the close of the recent Supreme Court sittings at Timaru, Mr. Malet, the Judge’s private secretary, was literally besieged by unfortunate individuals who had been summoned as jurors and were now claiming their pay. “Go to the Clerk,” said the secretary to some of the anxious ones when they applied to him. “ We have been to the Clerk, and its no good.” was the reply. Some further discussionensued, and at length the secretary testily remarked, “ Well, you can go to the Devil, then” —“And that’s just the reason why we came to you,” was the ready reply. Judge Johnston is celebrated for dry humor, and at the recent criminal sitting of the Supreme Court at Timaru it will be remembered the Wairaate arson case was heard. Mr. O’Meagher (of Oaraaru) appeared as one of the Counsel for Clark and his wife who were subsequently acquitted. In addressing the jury for the defence the learned counsel remarked, “ a great deal has been made by the prosecution, gentlemen, of the fact that my client, Clark, had written under several different signatures to the various insurance offices with which he had transactions. But sometimes it has been shown he wrote as Charles Henderson Clark, sometimes as C. H. Clark, while sometimes again he dropped the H, and became simply C. Clark —but what of that, gentlemen ? ” “ Oh, there was nothing in that,” remarked his Honoi’, “I have known many people who dropped their H’s.” Chisfa.
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CHTSPA’S LETTER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 119, 29 June 1880
CHTSPA’S LETTER. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 119, 29 June 1880
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